Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

Your Turn: “His Parents Don’t Like Me”

In a feature I call “Your Turn,” in which you, the readers, get to answer the question, I’m presenting the following letter without commentary from me:

I’ve been with my boyfriend for almost two years. We live together and love each other so much, but, since our relationship started, I had to drop out of college due to coming down with an unknown illness which was later discovered to be a lactose intolerance. I also suffered from reactive depression which caused stress-related IBS. Through out all of this, my boyfriend has looked after me so well. My parents love him, my sister likes him, my mum’s side of the family loves him, my dad’s side do as well; I mean, my cousins look forward to seeing him more than me!

Unfortunately, I have always felt like his family were not that fond of me. I have always been polite and tried my best to get on with them, yet I feel like sometimes they think I am not good enough for their son. When my boyfriend first got his new job in a different city, we agreed I’d move with him, but his dad basically said that I was not allowed to move in with him, though we did move in together almost a year ago and it has been great. When I had my depression, his parents acted like I was fishing for attention and I felt a little uncomfortable around his family after that.

I still haven’t found a job in our new city — it’s hard when everyone wants experience but no one will give you the chance to get it — and his mum is always asking when I am going to get a job, like I am choosing not to. I really want one — being stuck at home all day kills me — but his mother thinks I am lying and making excuses.

I just want them to like me. I want to talk to my boyfriend about it, but I don’t want to make him angry at me or anything like that. I don’t want to lose him. but I don’t know who else I can talk to. — On Their Bad Side

***************

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If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, you can send me your letters at wendy@dearwendy.com.

43 comments… add one
  • Roxy_84

    Roxy_84 March 18, 2013, 3:24 pm

    Why are you worried talking to your boyfriend would make him angry? That’s a little strange. I mean, sure, if you phrased it like “hey, bf, your sucky parents are on my case all the time they hate me for no reason and I can’t do anything right and I’m just so sick and tired of this!”. But if you sat him down and said something more like “I want to talk to you about something. I’ve been noticing more and more lately that your parents have never quite warmed to me. Do you have any idea what that might be about? Is there something I can do to mend some fences here? I’d like to have a good relationship with them like you have with my parents.”

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  • avatar

    lets_be_honest March 18, 2013, 3:26 pm

    They probably think you’re a mooch.

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  • theattack

    theattack March 18, 2013, 3:29 pm

    Two things:

    1) Depression is really hard, and you have my empathy there. I really feel for you. Unfortunately, not everyone understands it. When I was at rock bottom with my depression, I found that it was best to just not tell anyone about it except for people who understood it (my mom, then-boyfriend, close friend who also struggled with it, etc). It’s hard to not share what’s going on with your life, but it might be even harder to deal with the social repercussions of it. If someone notices, you can keep it to a minimum and say “I’ve just been going through a hard time lately. Thanks for your concern.”

    2) You should be able to talk to your boyfriend about things that bother you. If you’re committed enough to move in together, you should be able to have a basic conversation about the way his parents make you feel. He might not be able to fix this for you, but he should be able to listen. If he can’t, you should MOA.

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  • Fabelle

    Fabelle March 18, 2013, 3:30 pm

    Maybe his parents don’t like you. Maybe they think you’re an over-dramatic, lazy, unfriendly, leech. But more likely, you’re letting insecurity get the best of you?

    I mean, it’s certainly possible your boyfriend’s parents have reservations about you—but I think you’re projecting a bit. Look at your second paragraph. “I have always felt like…[they] were not that fond of me.” “I feel like…they think I am not good enough.” “…his parents acted like I was fishing for attention…I felt a little uncomfortable around his family after that.”

    Not to discount your feelings, but being depressed can kind of skew your perspective (I know this firsthand). YOU feel kind of down on yourself right now, I bet—being unemployed does that! (Again, knowing this firsthand…)

    You say his mother keeps asking you when you’re going to find a job—and I know how clearly your mind must be re-interpreting her question. “How’s the job search going?” = “So, you lazy lounge-about, when are you going to stop piggy-backing off of my son and get your own job?” But how do you know she thinks you’re “lying” and “making up excuses”? You don’t have any proof that she thinks that (none you’ve mentioned, anyway)

    So just stop thinking she thinks that! I forget who it was, but someone on here said something like, Oh, my life is so much easier now that I pretend to take everyone’s words at face value (Who was it???) But yeah—just start doing that. Your life will be easier, and you will be happier.

    As for your boyfriend…it seems like he’s not even aware of your turmoil? Feel free to confide in him (I’m not sure why you don’t want to?) You don’t have to be accusatory. Your family loves him (this sounds like another sore spot for you, by the way…) so maybe bring that up first? “Oh, I love how much my family looks forward to seeing you. But sometimes I wonder if your family even likes me…?”

    (Maybe that’s not the best way to phrase it; I’m sure others will have suggestions)

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    • Lianne

      Lianne March 18, 2013, 3:45 pm

      WFS!!

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    • avatar

      Ladybug March 18, 2013, 4:41 pm

      This x10000. When you’re in a tough place and feeling down on yourself, it’s so easy to read some kind of criticism or slight into every interaction (speaking from experience here). Your boyfriend’s parents may not be touchy-feely, embrace-the-girlfriend-right-away types, but going by the examples you gave there’s a good chance that they like you but aren’t sure how best to connect with you, and that his mom is just intersted in/concerned about your job search.

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    • landygirl

      landygirl March 18, 2013, 6:36 pm

      “Not to discount your feelings, but being depressed can kind of skew your perspective (I know this firsthand). YOU feel kind of down on yourself right now”

      I can’t agree with this enough. My friend suffers from depression and he is hyper aware of how others perceive him, or rather, how he perceives others as seeing him. It can be debilitating. He sees the actions of others as judging him whether or not they actually do because he is so down on himself.

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  • avatar

    Joey March 18, 2013, 3:34 pm

    I see a lot of mentions of negative things (illness, depression, unemployment) and very few good. I wonder what it is that is of interest to the letter writer? Maybe finding some common ground with the parents might help. I have to wonder if all they’re hearing is “my girlfriend has to leave school because of this” and “she’s dealing with depression” and “she’s unemployed.” Hearing some positives – something you’re interested in and working on, a new place you’re volunteering at, anything that’s not a negative could really serve to ingratiate you in their eyes. Cause, no, you don’t like sitting home all day – but they likely don’t like hearing about your troubles, either. Maybe try finding ways to change the conversation, and discuss future goals, projects, and new things that are developing. Sharing those with your boyfriend AND his parents may help imrpove your relationship. And for goodness’ sake, get started volunteering/interning! A dead resume will get you nowhere, and the best way to get out there is to meet new people! I’ve known a few dozen folks who got hired off internships/volunteer work (myself included), and at least that will send a good message to the boyfriend’s parents.

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  • avatar

    GatorGirl March 18, 2013, 3:40 pm

    Did anyone else read this entire letter to themselves in a British accent?

    -Depression is a pain in the ass. Find a way to get some treatement.
    -If you can’t find a full time job, get a part time job. Voulenteer. Do something, anything so you are being productive. This will make you more attractive to employers, help build yourself esteem, and get your BF’s parents off of your back.
    -You have to talk to your BF. Don’t make it all “they hate meeeee” but have an honest conversation about how you’re feeling like they don’t accept you and are disappointed in his choice to date you. Use “I” statements rather than “you” (or they in this case). You have to be open and honest with him. Good quality communication is so important in a relationship.
    -Get a hobby that makes you feel good. Go jogging or take up knitting. Garden. Anything that makes you happy and boosts your self esteem.

    Consider going back to school maybe. If you’re conditions are under control. (I have to say it seems a little crazy to withdraw from school over a lactose intolerance but I am probably being insensitive. Now that you know what it is I assume it’s treatable/manageable.) Even a 2 year ultrasound tech degree could give you some direction and purpose. (and get some cash in the door)

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    • avatar

      redessa March 19, 2013, 12:49 am

      LOL! As soon as I saw “mum” I totally started hearing a British accent in my head.

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      • Lady_Red

        Red_Lady March 19, 2013, 8:17 pm

        Same here!

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  • avatar

    Amanda March 18, 2013, 3:42 pm

    I’m really curious what your boyfriend is saying about you to his family, LW. To be honest, I would be really concerned if my hypothetical son supported a live-in college dropout girlfriend too. However, I would also realize that my son’s relationship is none of my business, so I wouldn’t ‘neb’ about it to him. Does your boyfriend have boundaries with his parents, i.e. does he realize that some topics are not open for discussion: finances, relationship problems, etc? Also, why do you feel you can’t talk about this with him? He is your partner, TALK TO HIM.

    If I were you LW, I would reapply for college part-time, work as a volunteer, go to job fairs, or basically do anything to get out of my house and feel like I’m making some progress in my life. Even the smallest accomplishment is progress that you can be proud of!

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  • FireStar

    FireStar March 18, 2013, 3:43 pm

    There isn’t anything you can tell to these people to make them change their minds about you. You have to show them.
    Honestly, it sounds a little extreme to drop out of school because of lactose intolerance – maybe there are degrees to the illness I’m not aware of but my husband’s family is lactose intolerant and even untreated it is not debilitating. Maybe it was for you but maybe your boyfriend’s family has had my experience so it sounds odd. And if you are totally being supported by your boyfriend then I can see why they would have a problem with that. So get a job. Any job. So you are at least contributing until you finish school/find something more suitable. And look into finishing school because if you don’t the only jobs you are appropriate for are the ones for high school graduates.
    And if talking to your boyfriend scares you into thinking he’ll be angry with you and will leave you – then what can I tell you? You have bigger problems than his family not liking you.

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    • avatar

      oldie March 18, 2013, 4:01 pm

      Agreed. When a LWs own description of herself makes her sound like a total sad-ass moocher, there is a problem. Get treatment/counseling for the depression. Restart college, even if it’s just taking a course a semester at your local community college. Get any part-time job you can. They don’t pay much, but they are still available in most cities. Volunteering or an unpaid internship is good. Just vegging around the house day in and day out is definitely not good. Try being less of a self-nominated victim and take some active control of your life.

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      • avatar

        zombeyonce March 18, 2013, 4:35 pm

        Upvote for the volunteering idea. That’s how to get out of the catch-22 of wanting a job but not having the experience for it. There are tons of volunteer programs in cities, and even small town have them, so go find one that will get you the experience you need. Even if you can’t find a program that’ll get you there, approach business owners in your field. I’m sure that plenty of businesses would love someone to work for them for free in exchange for a letter of reference and a line on their resume!

        And now that you know about your illness and should have ways to handle living with it, get back to college. There’s no excuse for you to sit around all day. It’ll make it that much harder to deal with your depression.

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    • avatar

      MissDre March 18, 2013, 4:04 pm

      Just want to jump in and say that if it caused IBS I understand. My brother has IBS and before he knew what it was, he was so so sick. He even ended up in the hospital for more than a week (on top of however many sick days before his wife finally took him to the emergency room). In his case, he had sick leave from work. But knowing how sick my brother was… well if he was in school I can understand having to drop out. He could have missed project deadlines, homework, tests, etc… I have no idea how serious her case is/was but I just wanted to say I can see her dropping out being possible due to her illness.

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    • bittergaymark

      bittergaymark March 18, 2013, 4:11 pm

      I actually was going to say something about dropping out over being lactose intolerant as it left me, frankly, baffled. So much so I just decided not to post as I, frankly, don’t have much experience with this… So thanks for going into detail on this… as my impression of it is rather like you say it is with your husband…

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    • CatsMeow

      CatsMeow March 18, 2013, 4:17 pm

      I feel like she dropped out when she was sick “with an unknown illness”, and NOW she knows it’s lactose intolerance / IBS. However, I don’t know what’s keeping her from finishing school now that she knows what it is and hopefully how to control it.

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    • avatar

      Addie Pray March 19, 2013, 6:21 am

      WFSS.

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  • avatar

    TECH March 18, 2013, 3:59 pm

    The LW deserves sympathy and understanding for her health struggkes, however something really caught my eye:
    “When my boyfriend first got his new job in a different city, we agreed I’d move with him, but his dad basically said that I was not allowed to move in with him”
    The LW and her boyfriend sounds fairly young (college age.) The above sentence makes me think the boyfriends parents are or were still giving him some financial support. If I was helping pay for my son’s living expenses, I would tell him the same thing. “No, your girlfriend can’t move in rent free if I’m helping pay for the apartment.” Something along those lines.
    This was not made clear in the letter, but it’s the impression I got.
    It sounds like the LW is still not in school or working. I can understand why the parents are concerned. I would suggest the LW either re-enroll in school or apply for jobs every single day. If you apply for jobs every single day and still you are not getting interviews, no one can blame you for not trying. I just wonder how concerted the job effort truly is. If you are unemployed there is no reason why submitting job applications should not be a daily occurrence.

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  • avatar

    bethany March 18, 2013, 4:43 pm

    I’m lactose intolerant. You know what I do? I avoid soft cheeses when I know I’m going to have to be out in public. I don’t drop out of school. Now, I know people with serious food allergies, IBS, Chrone’s, all sorts of things. But I have never heard of lactose intolerance being a reason to drop out of college- In fact everyone I know with the issues I’ve listed has at LEAST a bachelor’s degree. My apologies if there is some sort of severe lactose intolerance that I’m unaware of… But LW, it sounds to me like you’re dramatic and you want pity. If you were dating my son, I probably wouldn’t like you all that much either. I’d want my son with a strong woman. One who wouldn’t make excuses relating to dairy. I’d want him to live with a girlfriend who supported herself. I’d want the best for him. And frankly, it sounds to me like you’re not presenting yourself as that.

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    • avatar

      lets_be_honest March 18, 2013, 4:49 pm

      I’m friends with someone with Chrone’s (and IBS). He goes to work every day just like the rest of us.

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      • Diablo

        Diablo March 18, 2013, 6:57 pm

        My sister and father have Crohn’s. My Dad was once hospitalized due to low blood pressure (despite having chronic high BP) from blood loss due to internal bleeding. But he never missed any other work. My sister, on the other hand, had one of the worst cases ever, spent 10 months in ICU due to damage to her bowels and three surgeries none of which quite worked until the fourth surgery finally closed a foot long incision that had been OPEN for the entire 10 months.

        My point: the disease affects everyone differently. I may even have a mild case, as it is genetic, but nothing that ever needed official diagnosis or treatment.

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      • rawkmys0cks

        Sarah March 18, 2013, 11:14 pm

        Thank you for saying this. My sister and father have Crohn’s disease too and it’s extremely debilitating for both of them. Neither of them can work and it’s so sad because my sister is 21 and still lives at home. She needs my parents to help her manage her care, especially the daily injections. There are more complications than anyone can know and if the LW has even a fraction of the symptoms then I don’t blame her for not being able to manage school and her health at the same time. You guys are assuming a whole lot based upon your own experiences.

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      • avatar

        bethany March 19, 2013, 11:21 am

        But you guys– She doesn’t have Crohn’s. She’s LACTOSE INTOLERANT. Simply avoiding dairy solves her problem. Crohn’s is a sersious disease. Lactose intolerance is not.

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      • rawkmys0cks

        Sarah March 19, 2013, 1:06 pm

        She has IBS and depression too. All of these things are interrelated and I don’t think you can get a clear picture of what her health situation is like based on your assumptions about what lactose intolerance means. For some, that can mean just avoiding milk but not all dairy products, for others its much more severe, and what if it caused long term damage? You have no idea, except that it did cause her to drop out.

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      • avatar

        Milla March 18, 2013, 11:14 pm

        My partner has Crohn’s disease and has to have $5,000 infusions (of Remicade, and luckily she has insurance) every 8 weeks to remain mostly functional, but still struggles with fatigue and occasional pain. She works, but I could easily see if she didn’t have that kind of care she would have a really hard time with things.

        Furthermore, a lot of digestive disorders go hand in hand with depression and anxiety because of all the serotonin receptors in the small bowel. Some people have digestive disorders solved with little treatment, and others struggle along because things just don’t work for everyone in the same way.

        But really, just because one person you know has XY disease and reacts in X way, that doesn’t mean that every person with XY disease will. Even a cold can manifest in different ways. Sheesh.

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      • Lyra

        L March 18, 2013, 11:57 pm

        I have Crohn’s too and I very rarely miss a day of work for it. There are times when I feel really gross at work but I just go with it. I’m able to treat everything with over the counter meds. Of course, I have a very mild case. There are others who have severe cases and sometimes need to be hospitalized.

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    • avatar

      kerrycontrary March 18, 2013, 5:03 pm

      I have IBS and it was bad in college. It can make for some embarassing bathroom runs/sprints, but it shouldn’t rule your life.

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    • avatar

      Liquid Luck March 18, 2013, 5:04 pm

      I want to give this LW the benefit of the doubt. It sounds like she had no idea that she was lactose intolerant, and that she was just struggling with an undiagnosed illness for a long time. Dealing with an illness is MUCH easier when you know what it is. You know that you should avoid cheese, so you do. But when you don’t know how to treat what’s wrong with you, you can’t try everything that might help every situation. It’s impossible.

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  • avatar

    Liquid Luck March 18, 2013, 4:59 pm

    LW, I really empathize with you and your situation. It sounds almost exactly like the past few years of my life. I was unable to complete my degree because of an illness that wasn’t diagnosed for years, and between the untreated pain causing so many missed classes and the medical bills depleting my tuition money, I just couldn’t handle it anymore. Add in the depression after being so miserable for so long, I just wasn’t functioning well enough to cope. Dropping out of school and focusing on getting healthy was the best decision I ever made. If you feel that way too, don’t let anyone talk you out of it.

    You speak as if your depression is in the past, but you should still be actively treating it with therapy and medication. Make sure you find a doctor in your new city that you like an trust. Depression causes actual psychological and behavioral shifts, and you need to work to get away from those. Focus on the positive things in your life, and bring in some more. Volunteer somewhere while you look for a job to get out of the house. Look into joining a club and making new friends. If you haven’t yet, start applying to part-time jobs just to get some human interaction and a small paycheck.

    About you boyfriend’s mom–I know it’s tiring to have everyone asking you when you’re going to get a job when you’re already doing everything you can, but try not to take it so personally. They don’t realize that they’re the tenth person to ask you that week, and how hard it is to not have an answer. Just try to sound positive and tell her about a few of the positions you’ve applied for and why you’d be so excited to get them. Is his mother asking him when you’ll be getting a job and passing along that she asked? If so, tell him you don’t want to hear about their conversations concerning that matter because it just makes you even more frustrated with your situation.

    Talk to your boyfriend. He’s probably frustrated with the situation too, but tell him you need his support. Make a plan together for what you’ll do if you don’t have a job in X amount of time (whatever you can agree on), and then ask that he tell his parents that you two have worked out a plan and that they don’t need to be concerned the next time they ask about your job hunt. Whatever you work out is between the two of you, and it’s none of their business.

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  • Miss MJ

    MISS MJ March 18, 2013, 5:09 pm

    LW, if I’m reading your letter correctly, your boyfriend’s parents are concerned because in less than a year, their son began dating someone new, who dropped out of college and never went back due to a series of illnesses, and who then moved in with him over a year ago (over their objections) and hasn’t gotten a job or returned to school. They think you’re mooching off of their son. And, while you have your reasons, like it or not, those reasons just sound like excuses to them.

    And, they kind of sound like excuses to me, too. I completely understand that you were ill and maybe missed so much class during a semester that you had to drop out. But, why not go back the next semester? Was it because your boyfriend was graduating and you were planning to move with (and move in with) him? Well, then why not enroll in school where he lives? Is it because you don’t have the funds/loans/whatever? Okay, then why not get a job? It’s because you don’t have experience in your chosen field? Well, there are other fields. By my guess, you’re in your early 20s. There aren’t many 20 year olds who have loads of experience in any field. But, why not find a part-time job in your field or any other? Or volunteer, as others have suggested? Better yet do both. Because, what have you been doing for the last year? Sitting at home? Living off of your boyfriend’s money’? Living indirectly off of your boyfriend’s parent’s’ money if they’re helping him out? I’m pretty sure that’s what his parents think, if they’re badgering you about your job search, which really shouldn’t be any of their business, but anyway.

    The bottom line is, true or not, they think you’re full of excuses as to why you cannot work and do not contribute. Nothing is going to change their minds until you actually do something with yourself – school, job, volunteering, whatever. And, it would probably do you a world of good to be out doing it, too. It would give you something to talk to them about, give you something to think about and look forward to (thereby taking up space in your thoughts currently devoted to why they don’t like you) and most likely make you feel better about yourself.

    …Or, you could just get knocked up and then have the perfect reason to not go to school/work/whatever and most likely be able to bribe them with grandchildren. And, I’m JOKING! This is a terrible, no good, rotten idea and you shouldn’t even consider it.

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  • avatar

    Jessibel5 March 18, 2013, 5:23 pm

    I may not be tackling the crux of the problem with this advice, but whenever I hear someone say “no one’s hiring” or “I’m looking for a job, but can’t find one” my advice is to always DO ANYTHING. Starbucks, McDonald’s, retail, bookstore, waitressing, bartending, anything that gets you out of the house with actual pants on. I know that depression sucks and it can really hinder your ability to do stuff, but it may be the case with you, LW, that you need some kind of purpose in life to get you out of the house and going, and a part time job, while you’re still looking for THE job, will do that. Just don’t stop looking for the dream job…but this can go either one of two ways. You get a part time service industry type job and are bringing in money and making yourself feel better and his parents will be like “oh, look, she’s not a moocher, she’s contributing” OR if they’re just sucky people, you get a part time service industry type job and are bringing in money and you feel better, and his parents say “ugh, look at the menial labor job holder who isn’t good enough for our son”. Then you have a chat with your boyfriend about it. Having a job may make you feel more independent, and it’s entirely possible that that may lift some of your depression. At least if you get something part time his mom can’t come at you with her snarky comments anymore, nor can she say you’re making excuses.

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    • avatar

      Jessibel5 March 18, 2013, 5:24 pm

      Oh, and good luck!

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  • avatar

    Sue Jones March 18, 2013, 5:58 pm

    Look, get a job. Any job. Take care and responsibility for your health issues. Honestly, if my son got with a woman like you who did nothing but drain his or my finances, I would be pretty upset too. Regardless of whatever is going on, it is within your power to change it. And if you want to change their perception of you, you need to change it. Only you can do that. Put your energy into getting healthy, positive and employed and be an equal partner in your relationship.

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  • AKchic_

    AKchic_ March 18, 2013, 5:11 pm

    Depression has a way of filtering our perceptions. And not in a good way. Let’s say that you’re right (and you may very well be) and the parents/family don’t like you. So what? Does that color your boyfriend’s perception of you, or his feelings for you? Doesn’t seem like it since he allowed you to move with and move in with him. He is supporting you, financially and emotionally. That is his choice.

    You are going to have to try your hardest to stop pleasing his parents/family. It’s not good for your overall health.

    Next, stay on whatever medication(s) your doctor(s) has prescribed for you. If you feel as if it’s not working, go back and let them know. Your depression and IBS needs to be under control as much as possible. And yes, your IBS can cause more situational depression, which can cause a flare up of IBS, and the loop goes on and on.

    Keep looking for jobs. Take a crappy job in the mean time. Get with a temp agency for experience if needed (I did once). You may not get what you want right away, but at least you’ll be making a financial contribution.

    Good luck.

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  • avatar

    majinmd March 18, 2013, 6:31 pm

    Oh, how I have been there . . . and, to an extent, I still AM there! Like many of the comments above, I agree that LW’s depression/mood probably plays a big role in this, however, let’s assume for a minute that she isn’t as much of a sad-sack as she sounds and the parents really DON’T like her. In that case, sometimes, parental disapproval is really just a thinly-veiled resistance to change. That’s the case for me, anyhow.

    Story time! I met my now-husband in the last six months of medical school. I had good friends, a close family, and a good “gig” as I was about to become a doctor. Sounds like the parents would like me or at least give me a chance, right? Wrong, oh so wrong. Instead, they called me a “gold digger” who comes from a “bad family” just because I was living a modest life while in med school and my parents weren’t college educated, but had good jobs as a nurse and an electrician. They even tried to set my then-boyfriend up with someone else who was “worthy for the future”!

    Unfortunately, as time went on, things only got worse because as they knew more about me, their criticisms only became more desperate and superficial: “she’s ugly”, “we hate her laugh”, that sort of thing. It became readily apparent that it didn’t matter who I was or what I did, they were determined to dislike me purely because I was a glaring reminder that their baby boy was all grown up. In the end, so what? We knew we were in a happy, safe relationship and ultimately, it didn’t matter what they thought. So we just ignored them. We laid down ground rules to keep healthy adult boundaries with them, and stopped trying to put their happiness above our own. And you know what? It worked. We quickly found that we are happiest when we just live our lives as we see fit and their snide remarks and disapproval just don’t have power over us anymore.

    The bottom line, I think, is that you need to work on you, LW. And then, maybe it won’t matter so much if you have their approval anymore.

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  • avatar

    temperance March 18, 2013, 10:23 pm

    LW: My in-laws don’t like me. The reasons changed. First, I wasn’t good enough for him. Then, I was mooching (while looking for a job! actively!). Then, I “kept him from his family” because he didn’t go to visit them every other weekend. Then, I kept him from supporting them. Now, I think I’m better than everyone else because of my education. I’m polite and quiet, but because I am introverted to the point of getting stressed out when I can’t get time alone for a few days, I’m the worst.

    (These people hate me to the point where Mr. Temperance’s bitch sister de-friended me the day after my wedding, after I thought we had a good talk. Fuck her! lol)

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  • avatar

    BreezyAM March 19, 2013, 12:35 am

    My ILs used to not like me, basically because I wasn’t good enough in their humble opinion for their precious golden child. Luckily, I didn’t really give a fuck because I wasn’t marrying them. And Mr AM felt the same way. And after many years and struggles they realized no one could ever love their son more and have come to respect me at least.

    MIL and I can even joke now. I told her once “to be honest I wouldn’t have liked me either in your position!” 😉

    Maybe if you look objectively, you can see perfectly well why they don’t like you. (If in fact that’s true). You may need to develop a “meh, who cares?” attitude about it. Just keep trying to improve yourself FOR yourself and being the most awesome you that you can be.

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  • bittergaymark

    bittergaymark March 19, 2013, 3:17 am

    I would REALLY focus now on getting yourself a job. Any job. Face it, without a college degree at this point and in this economy — it probably won’t be in your dream career. Just get something, anything! Trust me, it will go a long, long way in getting them off your back.

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  • avatar

    Lily in NYC March 19, 2013, 11:08 am

    Like many people here, I have to assume his parents are befuddled to hear that you dropped out of college because of lactose intolerance. It’s awful, but easily treated (I have a severe case and am able to function fine). I’m not saying I don’t believe you, even though I do have a feeling your depression was probably the main cause of your problems (it makes even the most simple illness feel so severe – please understand I have lots of sympathy for you but am trying to look at this through the parents’ eyes). It’s easier for them to paint you with the moocher brush because they don’t know you well and are being protective of their son. So, you can only change their opinion by taking action – take a couple of classes, get a part-time job, anything that shows you are making an effort and not expecting their son to support you.

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  • Lady_Red

    Red_Lady March 19, 2013, 8:33 pm

    I don’t understand how it is so hard to get a job. I know unemployment has been relatively high in recent years, but is it really that impossible to get any job? I have a relative that’s been unemployed for awhile (although she did sign up w/ a temp agency and gets something once in a while) and she says she gets told regularly that she’s “over-qualified” when she applies for retail or food service jobs. But this LW doesn’t even have a college degree! How can you not get a job? I really don’t understand.

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    • bittergaymark

      bittergaymark March 20, 2013, 2:31 am

      Well, there are MORE workers now than jobs… That’s just a cold hard fact. And the unemployment rate is actually absurdly understated as so many people should be on it — but aren’t. Due to technicalities…. I know I fell off ages ago and am WOEFULLY under-employed.

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